Signs of depression in men
According to psychiatry and psychotherapy, depression refers to a period of unhappiness or low morale which may last longer than several weeks causing ideation of suicide. In daily human life, people are prone to depression. It could be caused by unemployment, illnesses, failure to attain set goals, conflicts at work places, and loneliness among others. Men are however at a higher risk of getting depressions due to family responsibilities. It’s not easy to tell when a man is affected by depression but in this article, I’ll highlight some of the most common symptoms which suggest depression in men. Signs of depression are the same regardless of gender but the chief complaint can be different in men and women.
Clinical depression was once considered a “woman’s disease,” but more men face depression each year. Unfortunately, the status quo of depression as a female condition may hinder men who are clinically depressed from realising the symptoms of depression and seeking treatment and medical advice. Actually, depression affects both sexes. It interferes with relationships and thus affecting work and daily tasks. The symptoms of depression in both men and women are similar. But men tend to display those symptoms differently. Common symptoms of depression are loss of interest in usually pleasurable activities, fatigue, sleep disturbances, changes in appetite, and apathy. In women, depression may be more likely to bring up feelings of sadness and worthlessness. Depression in men, on the other hand, may be more likely to make them become withdrawn or feel irritable, aggressive, or hostile.
There are a number of reasons why the symptoms of clinical depression in men are not commonly noticeable. For example, men are known to deny having problems because the society supposes them to “be strong.” American culture dictates that expressing emotion about depression is majorly a feminine trait. That being the case, men who are depressed will most likely talk about the physical symptoms of their depression such as feeling tired instead of symptoms related to their emotions.
Depression in men is treatable health condition and should not be taken for a sign of emotional weakness or a failing of masculinity. It affects a large population of men of all regardless of age and backgrounds, and also those who care about them; partners, friends, spouses, and family. Of course, it’s in order for people to feel down sometimes. Mood swings could be a usual response to losses, setbacks, and disappointments in life. However, depression in men changes the way you think, feel, and function in normal daily life. It can disrupt your productivity at work or school and affect your relationships, sleep, diet, and the normal happy way of life. Severe depression can be intense and uncomfortable. Looking for London Therapy for depression ?
Unfortunately, depression in men is often unconsidered as many people find it difficult to talk about their feelings. Instead, they tend to focus on the physical symptoms that often accompany male depression, e.g. back pain, sleeping difficulties, frequent headaches, or sexual problems. This can be caused by underlying depression going unattended, and can have serious consequences. Men suffering from depression are about four times more likely to commit suicide than women, it’s vital for any man to seek help with depression before feelings of despair become feelings of suicide. Talk honestly with close friends, loved ones, or psychiatric doctors about what’s going on in your mind as well as your body. Once correctly diagnosed, there is much that can be done to successfully treat and manage male depression and prevent it from coming back.
Some of the signs are:
Fatigue – Men suffering from depression undergo a series of emotional and physical changes. They experience fatigue and psychomotor retardation. This means they slow down physical movement, thought processes and speech.
Over sleeping or too little sleep-Sleeping problems to include insomnia, waking up too early in the morning or oversleeping are the most common symptoms of depression. It’s not a wonder that some people could sleep for 12 hours but still feel exhausted. Other can turn, toss or even wake up after every hour.
Stomach ache or back ache – According to past study, chronic back pains and digestive disorders go hand in hand with depression.
Irritability – Depressed men often exhibit irritability instead of seeming down. When a depressed man talks about an emotional component, it could be sadness with embedded irritability. Negative thoughts are a result of depression. Men may also report feeling irritable due to having negative thoughts multiple times.
Difficulty concentrating – A man’s ability to process information can be affected largely by psychomotor retardation. This in turn impairs concentration on work and other common tasks. Depression fills a person with lots of negative thoughts, like an intrusion. You’re are then slowed down and constantly thinking about negative things revolving around your world. As a result, this makes it very hard to focus on anything. This would be well described as a form of reversible brain failure. It’s evident that when you’re depressed, it’s like your CPU.
Anger or hostility – Some men show signs of depression by being rude, hostile, angry and aggressive. A man who realises something is wrong may need to cover up for the guilt of depression by demonstrating that he is still strong or capable. This is primarily what makes depression in men unnoticeable. Hostility and anger are a bit intense which makes them different from irritability. Anger especially, tends to be a strong emotion, irritability is just being somehow stubborn. Depressed men become hostile when they have withdrawn or isolated themselves as a result of their depression and feel as though they are under pressure by friends or family to assume their initial life.
Stress – Men might be more likely to report symptoms of depression as stress. This is due to the fact that, to clear the mind over certain issues that could cause stress, human nature demands you to talk it out to friends, relatives or a doctor. It’s not that men have more stress but it’s that it’s more acceptable socially to talk about stressing issues. Stress and depression can also travel in two-way traffic. It’s true to say that feeling stressed can indicate having clinical depression and can also be part of the cause. Past research has proved that prolonged exposure to stress can lead to gradual changes both in the body and brain, which can in turn render a person to depression.
Anxiety – Research has proved that there is a strong relationship between anxiety disorders and depression. Men however may not be likely to experience anxiety than women. As a matter of fact,these effects could be approximately two times as much compared to men. It’s very rare to find men talking of feeling anxiety but instead sadness. Men might just discuss issues about work and whether the loss of a job will suppress their ability to provide for themselves and their family. It may be easier to call these worries and fears.
Drug abuse – Substance abuse frequently go hand in hand with depression. Research has proved that alcoholics are most likely to suffer from major depression as the people without a drinking problem. It can happen for both men and women, but using drugs or alcohol to avoid discomfort is a strategy a good percentage of men will improvise instead of seeking health care. There’s a status quo of, I should be in a position to fix these issues on my own and so I’ll use substances that are available to me to achieve that.
Sexual dysfunction – Depression is a major factor in loss of desire and erectile dysfunction (ED). This symptom however is not reported by men because it looks shameful. Men also don’t like to be seen as incapable of handling their responsibilities. This is what forces them to stay silent about this symptom. Performance problems can arise from depression and make depression worse. However, ED can also be caused by other medical conditions or medications (including anti-depressants). ED on its own does not show depression. Informed recommendation is that you can’t conclude using a single symptom.
Indecision – I can’t count the number of people complain about having money in the bank but the phone communication is terminated simply because they couldn’t pay the bill or make the best decision of what to do and when.’ It’s even worse when other people naturally have a hard time making decisions, incapability to make choices is usually bothersome if only it’s a new behavior. It’s an information processing issue,” and depression slows down the ability to decide.
Thoughts of committing suicide – Women are highly associated with cases of attempting suicide, however men are more than four times as likely to die if they attempt suicide. The reason being that men tend to choose more lethal ways of doing it. More often they use firearms and kill themselves the first time they attempt suicide. Older men (advanced age) are at a higher risk for suicide, and doctors may not see depression symptoms in this bracket. Depression however is not a normal part of aging in men or women.
Reckless behaviour – A man who suffers from such effects display dangerous or risky behavior to include pursuing dangerous sports, driving recklessly and may take part in unprotected sex. He might also drink so much, abuse drugs and substances, or sometimes gamble compulsively.
Types of depression
Major depression can be sometimes called major depressive disorder, clinical depression, unipolar depression or just ‘depression’. It involves low mood and/or loss of interest and pleasure in usual tasks. The effects are encountered most days and stay for a minimum of two weeks. Symptoms of depression affect all areas of a person’s life, to include work and social relationships. Depression can be described as low, moderate or severe; melancholic or sometimes psychotic.
Melancholic – This is the term used to point to a severe form of depression where many of the physical symptoms of depression are evident. One of the major changes is that the person starts moving more slowly. They’re also more likely to show a depressed mood which is characterized by complete loss of interest in everything, or almost everything.
Psychotic depression – In some instances, people who have this problem can’t embrace reality normally thus experiencing psychosis. This can cause hallucinations (seeing or hearing things that aren’t there) or delusions (false beliefs that aren’t shared by others), like believing they are bad or evil, or that they’re being watched and followed around. They can also be paranoid, i.e. feeling like everybody is against them or that they are the ones causing illness or bad events that occur around them.
Bipolar disorder-Was initially known as ‘manic depression’ due to the fact that the person experiences periods of depression and periods of mania, with periods of normal mood in between.
Mania is like the contrary of depression and can differ in intensity. Common signs are feeling great, having lots of energy, having racing thoughts and little need for sleep, talking quickly, having difficulty focusing on tasks, and feeling frustrated and irritable. This is not just a fleeting encounter. At times the person can’t perceive reality besides having episodes of psychosis. Experiencing psychosis includes hallucinations (seeing or hearing something that is not there) or having delusions (e.g. the person believing he or she has superpowers).
Bipolar disorder looks like the most closely related to family history. Stress and conflict can cause episodes for people with this condition and it’s not unusual for bipolar disorder to be misdiagnosed as depression, alcohol or drug abuse, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) or schizophrenia.
Diagnosis relies on the person having had an episode of mania and, unless examined closely, this can be hard to pick. It is not unusual for people to go for years before acquiring an accurate diagnosis of bipolar disorder. If you’re experiencing highs and lows, it’s helpful to clarify to your doctor or treating health professional. Bipolar disorder affects approximately 2 per cent of the population.
Cyclothymic disorder- Cyclothymic disorder is mostly described as a milder form of bipolar disorder. The person undergoes chronic fluctuating moods over at least two years, involving periods of hypomania (a mild to moderate level of mania) and periods of depressive signs, with very short periods (no more than two months) of normality between. The duration of the symptoms are shorter, less severe and not as regular, and thus don’t fit the criteria of bipolar disorder or major depression.
Dysthymic disorder-The signs of dysthymia are similar to those of major depression but are less severe. However, in the case of dysthymia, symptoms last longer. A person has to have this milder depression for more than two years to be diagnosed with dysthymia.
Seasonal affective disorder (SAD)-SAD is a mood disorder which has a seasonal pattern. The cause of the disorder is not clear, but it’s thought to be related to the variation in light exposure in different seasons. It’s noticeable by mood disturbances (either periods of depression or mania) that begin and end in a particular season. Depression which commences in winter and ends when the season ends is the most common. It’s usually diagnosed after the person has had the same symptoms during winter for a couple of years. People with SAD depression have a high chance of experiencing lack of energy, sleep too much, overeat. This condition is seldom in Australia and more likely to be found in countries with shorter days and longer periods of darkness, for instance, in the cold climate zones of the Northern Hemisphere.
How to treat depression
The first step to obtaining the right treatment is visiting a doctor or a mental health professional. He or she can conduct lab tests to sort out other conditions that may have the same symptoms as depression. He can also advise if some medications you are using might be affecting your mood. The doctor requires to obtain a complete history of symptoms. Tell him when you noticed the symptoms, how long they have been there, how bad they are, whether they were treated. Also tell him if there is a history of depression in your family.
Anti-depressants can treat depression. But they can take some weeks to work. They can also have side effects which vary from person to person. It’s important to speak to your doctor about all the alternative therapies and options before considering medication.
Therapy – Several kinds of treatment can help remedy depression. Some therapies are just as operational as prescriptions for certain types of depression. Therapy assists by teaching new ways of discerning and reacting, and varying habits that might be adding to the depression. Therapy can also help men recognise and work through trying situations or relationships which may be causing their depression or deteriorating it.
Dos and don’ts during depression – As you continue treatment, gradually you will start to feel better. Remember that if you are taking any medication, it may take several weeks for it to work. Do things that you used to cherish before you experienced depression. Other important tips include:
Visit a professional soon. Research proves that seeking treatment sooner can relieve symptoms quicker and reduce the duration of time therapy is required.
Break up large duties into small ones, and avoid multitasking.
Spend time with other people and talk to close friends or relatives about how you feel.
Do not make important decisions until you recover. Discuss decisions with others who know you well enough.
Generally, the article was about depression but most importantly, the signs that men display when they are depressed.
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